This isn't your grandpa's paint shelf! Build this simple but elegant shelf for all of your spray paint storage needs using the free plans below.
Welcome to Week 4 of The Take Back My Garage Renovation Series! Last week I built the french cleat system pictured above. This week was dedicated to custom tool shelving. In case you've missed previous weeks, you can catch up here:
I've always wanted to build something with scalloped edging, so this was my big chance. Initially I was going to build paint holsters using PVC pipes, but it didn't look right in person, so I changed the plan last minute.
It really doesn't get any simpler than this!
One base + two scalloped sides + three shelves + three dowels. That's it people!
If you've never worked with scalloped edging before, now is the perfect time to start!
Note this post includes affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission should you purchase any of the items recommended below. For more, see my disclosures.
- Miter saw
- Table saw
- Jig saw
- Measuring tape
- Power drill + bit
- Nail gun
- Build plans -> located at the bottom of this post!
- 5/8" and 1 1/4" brad nails
- 1" wood screws
- 1/2" plywood (half a sheet should be plenty)
- 1x4 pine @ 6'
- Wood glue
- (3) 3/8" dowel rods
- latex paint (optional)
- water-based polycrylic (optional)
Rip down your plywood on your table saw. To get exactly 5 cans of spray paint to fit per shelf, you'll want your base to be approximately 14" wide. You can make your rack as tall as you want -- mine was just short of 20" tall.
In addition to the base, you'll also want two pieces of plywood for your scalloped sides. Make them the same height as your base and ripped to a width of 7".
At this point your base should be ready to go. Your sides still need "scalloping." The easiest way to create scallops is to start by cutting out a symmetrical zig zag pattern with a table saw or jigsaw.
Then, use a paint can or template to create a curved edge at the point of each summit. Cut out your template with a jigsaw.
Pre-drill 2-3 holes along the left and right side of your frame, being sure to use a countersink drill bit so that the screws will end up flush with the wood.
Run a bead of wood glue along the end of your scalloped sides and secure them in place with clamps. Attach them to your frame using 1" screws.
Set your table saw to 30 degrees and rip your 1x4s to 2.5 inches in width. The final shelf will measure 3" from the long end of your mitered edge.
Make three marks spaced 4 15/16" apart; this is where the mitered edge of each shelf will sit.
Run a bead of wood glue along the edges of each shelf; secure in place with brad nails. I used a combination of 5/8" and 1 1/4" nails.
Determine the placement of your dowel rod by setting a can of spray paint on the shelf and testing for fit.
Mark the placement of your dowel rod and then drill a small hole with a drill bit, spade bit, or countersink bit. Basically you want to make a small indented area for your dowel to rest.
Cut your dowel about 1/8" long so that it fits tightly across the front of your shelves. Add wood glue to either end and snap into place using your pre-drilled hole. Check for level.
Now for the final touches. Add a few layers of paint if desired, and give it a coat of polycrylic if you want to protect the finish. If not, I won't tell.
Add a corresponding french cleat to the back, and you're done!
Related: How to Build a French Cleat System
Get the Plans
Ready to make one for yourself? Click on the image below.
Not only does this shelf keep cans and bottles up and out of the way, it also keeps them within easy reaching distance. Loading this baby up was probably the best part of the entire project.
I'm tempted to use scallops on more cleats going forward. What do you think? I'm having a blast customizing this workshop space...
Remember what this space looked like a month ago!?? Crazy.
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